August 13, 2012 - August 14, 2012
Collins Conference Room
Dr. Mathew Burrows
Counselor and Director, Analysis and Production Staff, National Intelligence Council
"Global Trends 2030: Alternative Worlds" is a draft report being prepared by the US National Intelligence Council to be released after the presidential election, in December 2012. The goal of the report is "to stimulate thinking about the rapid and vast geopolitical changes characterizing the world today and possible global trajectories over the next 15 years. As with the NIC’s previous Global Trends reports, the report does not seek to predict the future—which would be an impossible feat—but instead provide a framework for thinking about possible futures and their implications".
Dr. Burrows and colleagues from the Atlantic Council are visiting the Santa Fe Institute and a large number of other US and international organizations, both public and private, to engage in dialog and constructive debate about the analyses and conclusions of the report. Beginning at 10AM on Monday August 13, Dr. Burrows will present an overview of the report and engage the SFI community and visitors in discussion on its major points. There will be opportunity for individual discussions Monday afternoon and Tuesday.
Electronic copies of the Global Trends 2030 report are available from Chris Wood at email@example.com. Space is limited so please RSVP to Chris at that same address.
From Global Trends 2030:
The world of 2030 will be radically transformed from our world today: the population will rise from 7.1 billion to about 8.3 billion; the percent of the world’s population in the middle class will expand from the current 1 billion to over 2 billion; urbanization will grow from 50 percent of the world’s population to about 60 percent; demand for resources—food, water, and energy—will rise dramatically; and power will shift toward multifaceted networks. It is our contention that many of the megatrends of our changing world—such as the empowerment of the individual, demographic patterns, diffusion of power, and growing salience of natural resource challenges—are knowable. Extrapolations of these megatrends would by themselves point to an altered world by 2030.
However, the world could transform itself in starkly different ways. Human agency can bend trendlines. We believe that five key variables or game-changers— questions regarding the economy, governance, conflict, technology, and the role of the United States—will largely determine what kind of transformed world we will inhabit in 2030.
Based upon what we know about the megatrends and the possible interactions between the megatrends and the game-changers, we envision three potential worlds. At one end of the spectrum is a highly dysfunctional reverse engines world prone to violence and conflict that would threaten human security on a vast scale. On the other hand, a newly rebalanced and fused world in which social, economic, technological, and political progress is spread more widely is equally conceivable. In the middle is what we see as the most likely course toward a more fragmented, less cohesive—albeit still globalizing world.
Dr. Mathew Burrows was appointed Counselor to the National Intelligence Council (NIC) in July 2007 and Director of the Analysis and Production Staff (APS) in January 2010. He also served previously as Director of APS from 2003 to 2007. As Director of APS, he is responsible for managing a staff of senior analysts and production technicians who guide and shepherd all NIC products from inception to dissemination. He was the principal drafter for the NIC publication, Global Trends 2025: A Transformed World. In September 2005, he was asked to set up and direct the NIC's new Long Range Analysis Unit.
Dr. Burrows joined the CIA in 1986, where he served as analyst for the Directorate of Intelligence (DI), covering Western Europe, including the development of European institutions such as the European Union. In 1998-99 he was the first holder of the Intelligence Community Fellowship, and served at the Council of Foreign Relations in New York. Other previous positions included assignments as special assistant to the US UN Ambassador Richard Holbrooke, 1999-2001, and Deputy National Security Advisor to US Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill in 2001-2002. He is a member of the DI's Senior Analyst Service.
Dr. Burrows graduated from Wesleyan University in 1976 and in 1983 received a PhD in European History from Cambridge University, England.
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